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06/01/2009

'The only thing I hate more than physical violence is spiritual and moral violence.'

by Jeremy Hooper

You know how we've been detailing the out-there words of Mike Heath, the more prominent figurehead for Maine's movement to rollback marriage equality? Well he's now written a piece in response to the Tiller murder that (a) directly links abortion to homosexuality, (b) somewhat makes apologies for those who are "growing weary of Mike-Heaththe game," and (c) predicts more violence as a response to the "fight" that their side has wholly waged against us. For us, his latest only adds more fuel to our belief that Mike, with his unrestrained messaging and willingness to decry gays as "sinners" and perverts," is a major -- MAJOR! -- liability for the team who will, undoubtedly, soon hit the Pine Tree State with a campaign to convince the voting public that they are the "morally superior" ones.

Here is Mr Heath's piece, in part:

...
Now, [Tiller's] murder puts him on the same list as Matthew Shephard. The high-profile murder should help pass the "hate crimes" law that is moving through Congress. Nobody thinks Tiller should have been murdering babies. Nobody thinks Tiller should have been murdered. That should be the end of it.

Alas, now all of us who really do hate ... sin ... will have to contend with a public relations driven tsunami of hype aimed at getting us to prove we hate violence. The only thing I hate more than physical violence is spiritual and moral violence.

...
We pretend abortion isn't about the killing of innocent human beings so that we can be relieved of the consequences of sexual sin. We do the same thing with all things "gay."

More and more people are growing weary of the game. Sex outside of marriage is a dead end. The Playboy culture is wearing thin. We're bored by it. Especially now that our children and grandchildren are forced by this perverted culture to look more like pierced pagans than the lovely creatures God created them to be.

The end to this fascination with sexual perversion can't come soon enough for me. I'm afraid it is likely we will be dealing with more, not less, violence before this religious conflict plays itself out.
George Tiller is dead [Mike Heath blog]

So he's rightly bemoaning that his "side" will have to fight the PR fight to prove that they decry violence (which the vast majority surely do). But at the same time, he's putting forth the same sort of absolutist, overheated dogma that keeps certain people vulnerable to violence! That's dangerous territory.

Mr. Heath is essentially saying that a culture that does not progress in lock-step along his desired path is a culture that should not be supported. He's flat-out labeling those who hold views different than his own as either "sinners" or supporters of the same. And he's unabashedly declaring that he wants an end to what he calls "sexual perversion," a camp in which LGBT people are his most prominent members. So when Mike Heath makes a prediction for more violence, how can we, as LGBT people (and especially if you are an LGBT progressive) not think that the targets of said violence will be us?! If you've been paying attention, the assumption is not an unreasonable one.

A living, breathing, post-born human being has been murdered in cold blood. For those who so vocally oppose abortion, the bottom-line should be that (a) they staunchly oppose reproductive choice/freedom, but (b) they staunchly oppose even the most minor form of violence against those who disagree. That's a respectable response. But what Mr. Heath has presented looks dangerously close to an attempt to rationalize the heated antipathy. That is a losing strategy with frightening possibilities!

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Your thoughts

"He's flat-out calling those who hold views different than his own are 'sinners' or supporters of the same."

Something to worry about: this is is a virtue to the religious right. We all have fun at the expense of the term "politically correct," but crazy Christians have turned the whole idea of saying inflammatory and intolerant things in public into a higher virtue than charity. They call it "standing up for what's right" or other similarly formulaic hogwash.

It profanes faith, and it deeply offends me.

Posted by: Garet | Jun 1, 2009 10:59:47 AM

"The only thing I hate more than physical violence is spiritual and moral violence."

This man just said that murder is more okay than disagreeing with his religious views. If that isn't incitement, then I don't know what is.

Posted by: Dick Mills | Jun 1, 2009 1:31:07 PM

I agree with your assessment that this is the essence of what he is saying : "He's flat-out labeling those who hold views different than his own as either "sinners" or supporters of the same." And while Mr. Heath may be much more circumspect in his rhetoric, it sounds a lot like the WBC's position (sinner or sin enabler).

In that last paragraph, does he sound almost sympathetic to the murder's actions? Or am I just being overly cynical/suspicious?

Posted by: DanM | Jun 1, 2009 2:45:12 PM

If sex outside of marriage is a dead end, let me get married. Let me get married to the only gender that would make marriage make sense to me. The link between homosexuality and abortion is completely contrived. I can honestly say that I have never gotten a guy pregnant, nor has any guy ever gotten me pregnant.

When will the right wing yo-yos learn that one way of cutting down on abortions is to have decent sex ed in all schools.

Posted by: Mike in the Tundra | Jun 1, 2009 4:25:32 PM

I am bi and have had two very strong relationships in my life, one with a man and one with a woman. Guess which one got me pregnant three times? (I miscarried, unfortunately.) I find the homosexuality/abortion connection so laughable!

I hope the fact that this man is so neophobic in general--a hater of the new and different--makes people turn off.

I am deeply grateful that I and most of the people I love are not his idea of a "lovely creature."

Posted by: GreenEyedLilo | Jun 1, 2009 8:36:58 PM

GreenEyedLilo, there are a couple of ways that the lying liars manage to link decriminalized abortion and LGBT existence.

First, both were basically determined to be legal using a constitutional right to privacy (an expansive view of the enumerated right to liberty). And, the lying liars are livid that anyone has the right to ignore their lunacy based on some radical interpretation of "liberty". After all, "liberty" (in their minds) is something that only they have any right to claim.

The second reason is the obvious, they are both related to sex. And, to the fundies, sex is one of their biggest (most exploitable) vices, because everyone enjoys sex, so making it taboo immediately makes everyone guilty of something. But they can't make it entirely off limits, so they control the situations where it is permissible. So they get to berate their own, simply for being human, but that keeps them in-line. But more than that, for the "chaste" they can set up a superiority (supremacist) complex. Everyone is evil (for being human), but by obeying their edict about sex, they can become better than everyone else. So, they slap them in the face to get their attention, but then feed them a piece of candy to smooth it over.

Some say that the issue of abortion involves killing unborn children. But you never hear any of them suggesting that the women who have those abortions are murderers - if they were, then they would be calling for those murderers to go to prison (or be put to death themselves). They do, on the other hand, generally call the doctors murderers. O'Reilley regularly invoked the "Tiller the baby killer" to point out his disgust with abortion, but he never called the women who got abortions killers.

That's pretty telling about the motives that drive the "protect the unborn babies" crowd. They evoke that incendiary response to "murder", but what they really are saying (with their limited focus on abortion providers) is that it really is the sex that they want to outlaw by making exaggerating the repercussions of sex. Which is also why most of the lying liars vehemently oppose sex education and, to a slightly lesser extent, contraceptives. So, the lying liars are pissed off that people are having sex, and the way that they can rally the minions is to make it about something else, like murder.

With us, they can't make it about murder, so they make it about "unhealthy", or "perverted", or some other equally deplorable something. But, it is for the same purpose: to outlaw sex that they don't approve of.

And, that points out what their primary reason is: that they can easily enrage a bunch of morons, simply by using some incendiary rhetoric about LGBTs (who are easy to hate) or abortionists. And, notice that they always use that "abortionists" term, because that perfectly directs their ire at the providers, and not at the women who are having an abortion.

And, one last thing, Jerry Falwell was the first of the lying liars to really discover that LGBT and abortion hatred could be exploited to turn a buck. No one even discussed it until the seventies or early eighties, when Falwell's numbers (fortune) streaked meteorically, so then the other lying liars quickly jumped on this new bandwagon.

So, now we are where we are, it's easy to exploit hatred by convincing the hordes to hate us, or to hate abortion doctors. But it is more difficult to get them to hate the women who have abortions, so they don't target them. And, if you have the stomach for it, the gig can be pretty lucrative.

Posted by: Dick Mills | Jun 1, 2009 10:51:33 PM

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